Perhaps no other American city has drawn as much attention—and scrutiny—during this pandemic as New York, the site of a devastating coronavirus wave this spring. Stories of the rich fleeing to country homes en masse prompted some to start writing the city’s eulogy.
But not everyone’s buying that narrative. Below, three writers cast their doubts:
Talmon Joseph Smith, a staff editor at The New York Times, talked with residents on the street in Brooklyn. He concluded that “New Yorkers—the majority of whom do not live in the wealthiest corridors of Manhattan—don’t seem particularly injured about, or engrossed by, the perceived loss of Manhattan as a playground for the rich.”
One question, answered: How should I prepare for flu season?
“Get a shot, and do it soon,” our assistant editor Kate Cray reports.
Hospitals, which typically fill up in winter, have already been overrun by surges of the coronavirus and now risk being overwhelmed by flu and COVID-19 cases at the same time.
Vaccination and effective social distancing may limit flu spread here—like it seems to have in Australia—but that depends on us, says Kelly Moore, a health-policy professor at Vanderbilt University who specializes in immunization.
There’s no reason to expect that flu symptoms will be any less severe this year for those who do get sick, says David Vlahov, an epidemiologist and a nursing professor at Yale. And health experts are worried that those who got their shots at work or at school might skip them this year.
“Anytime something becomes less convenient, it’s less likely to happen,” says Susan Bailey, an immunologist and the president of the American Medical Association.
Here are a few things to know ahead of time:
The shot can take around two weeks to strengthen the immune response and then should remain effective throughout the season.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends getting vaccinated before the end of October, though the shot is still worth getting later.
Vaccines will be available at most health centers and pharmacies.
Expect typical safety precautions at the clinics: masks, gloves, hand-washing, and distance between people. (You can view the full list of CDC guidelines here.)
Many of those at higher risk for COVID-19 are also at a high risk for the flu, and it’s especially important that they get a shot, experts told me. Moore suggested that anyone worried about potential exposure call in advance, and Vlahov pointed out that some clinics have special “senior hours.”
47 days remain until the 2020 presidential election. Here’s today’s essential read: